I-League 2017: East Bengal, ATK wrangle over advertising space in Salt Lake Stadium
What's the story?
With the ISL and the I-League running simultaneously from this season onwards, the clubs from the two leagues seem to be caught in a bit of a wrangle over the nitty-gritties of hosting matches at the iconic Salt Lake Stadium, in Kolkata.
In case you didn't know
ATK, the Kolkata franchise in ISL, and I-League teams East Bengal and Mohun Bagan will be playing their home games at the Salt Lake Stadium, Kolkata. Previously, there have been controversies on the fees the teams would have to pay to use the Salt Lake Stadium. While East Bengal and Mohun Bagan were allowed to use the stadium, for free ATK were imposed with heavy rent for the use of the stadium.
The heart of the matter
A new controversy erupted ahead of ATK's first home game of the season, against FC Pune City, with regards to the LED boards on the sideline at the Salt Lake Stadium. The Hoarding of the home team sponsors and the league sponsors are kept on the sidelines, and as per rules, the boards should be placed within 1-3m of the touchline.
ATK, who play their first home match against FC Pune City at the Salt Lake Stadium, have placed their LED boards a metre away from the touchline. The Kolkata-based club is not willing to remove their LED boards after tonight's match, and East Bengal will have to place their boards in front of ATK's boards, according to sources.
The problem that arises with this is that ATK's boards are said to be placed at a distance of 1m, and East Bengal, who have supposedly been asked to place their boards in front of the ATK boards, will be violating the rules, if they do so.
East Bengal will have to sort the issue before their first home game against Aizwal FC this Tuesday if they have to avoid action from the organisers.
The duel between the two leagues is not a new thing. The Kolkata teams have been in a wrangle between each other over the iconic stadium, an issue that soon needs to be solved.